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3 High-Impact Habits For Entrepreneurs Who Value Growth

Ever since becoming a dad, my take on entrepreneurship has shifted a little.

Instead of scaling, I now value sustainable growth more.

Instead of hustling, I now value efficiency more.

Instead of “let’s just do it”, I now think more before embarking on new projects.

In short, I value time, efficiency and sustainability instead of just growth.

At the time of writing this letter, I just got back from Guangzhou from a music fair. 

Reason for going?

To find new ideas and products, so I can increase the customer lifetime value for my music education business. 

Which made me realise…

There are a few important practices I think entrepreneurs should never stop doing. 

Entrepreneurs like me – who value not just growth, but also value building a business that has freedom and flexibility.

I call them high-impact habits – habits that when done consistently and right, can have huge long term benefits for the business.

Habit #1 – Increasing customer lifetime value

Once your products/services are built, and your customer acquisition model is already in place…

The next thing to focus on is how to increase the customer lifetime value.

I learned this the hard way. 

In 2018, when I created my first ukulele workshop – where it was a 2 hour workshop teaching beginners how to play ukulele, I realised the numbers didn’t make sense.

Especially when I was running ads to acquire customers. 

I priced my workshop at $99 back then.

And the customer acquisition cost was roughly $30-$40.

That means per student who joins the workshop, my gross profit was around 50%.

But as time went by, the cost per acquisition increased. 

And I didn’t have anything more to sell them. 

(You could tell I was really a newbie at business and marketing…)

This is where the numbers didn’t make sense:

I spent $50 to acquire a customer, but they could only spend $100 with me.

What we did was to create higher levels of our ukulele workshop.

We also packaged in instruments they could buy from us.

Instead of being able to spend $100, a customer can now spend $1000+ with us through our ukulele program alone. 

Now, the numbers make sense. 

I can spend $50 to acquire a student now and have more stuff to sell. 

So to put it in marketing terms – we managed to increase our customer lifetime value.

Since then, we have expanded into offering guitar and piano workshops.

Not forgetting the eCommerce store we built, selling both musical instruments and online lessons. 

Thus, the purpose of the Guangzhou trip was to look for new instruments so we can offer more products to our customers.

So this habit of always looking to increase product offerings, increase customer lifetime value, is a good habit to keep in mind.

Because right now, with the marketing knowledge I have, with the email list of close to 10k subscribers for my music business…

I know finding new products to sell to existing customers is the easiest and fastest way to get sales. 

Habit #2 – Building systems

We always hear the popular phrase “work on the business, not work in the business” as entrepreneurs.

But what exactly does it mean?

For me, that means building a business that can run without me being involved in the day to day operations. 

Sometime in 2018, I read a book called Work The System by Sam Carpenter.

In this book, this guy shared how he was able to systemize and document all the work processes in his business such that it can run smoothly, with predictability and with little hiccups. 

It was eye opening for me because it changed my perspective on building systems.

My biggest takeaway from the book is that any hiccups in your business is an opportunity for you to build a system around it to prevent the same thing from happening. 

Instead of fighting fire, we build processes to prevent fire.

Being systematic is my weakness.

But precisely because of that, building systems around me is crucial so the business can still function properly without me.

Upon reading that book, I built SOPs for my whole business.

From how to conduct a ukulele workshop… (I have a step by step written guide on what to say, how to say, what to teach in the workshop)

To simple things like how to operate a printer or projector.

Today, whenever I hire someone new, I don’t have to restart training because all the standard operating procedures are already there. 

I pass them the link to that document, they read it, or watch a training video, and they can start doing it.

Even though building systems wasn’t a ROI positive activity…

It certainly allowed me to free up my time from day to day operations, and be able to focus on ROI generating activities. 

So to this day, I keep the same habit of documenting processes down.

To minimise hiccups, to save time, and to let the business function smoothly.

Habit #3 – Adopt a curious and open mind 

Working hard is important. 

Spending time doing the actual work is a must.

But a habit I try to keep is to set aside time to explore new things and learn from other businesses.

Whether by talking to people…

Watching videos…

Or reading.

I try to observe what’s working well for others and see if it can be applied to my own businesses.

For example, most recently, I learned that launching a 7-day email campaign can work very well in getting sales if you’re launching a new training or workshop.

I saw how this was done by other email marketers. I paid $197 to learn how to do it through an online course. 

I used it to launch my “Ugly Ads Training” back in January, where I got 9 people signing up from a very small email list of just 200+ people. 

This made me about $1k+ for just a 2 hour training.

Realising the concepts of scarcity and deadline works, I applied the same method for my music business.

I launched 2 new music workshops by sending the same 7 day email campaigns, and managed to get $4k plus worth of sign ups, without spending on ads.

My point here isn’t just about the email campaigns working well.

It’s about how I deliberately set aside time each day to read and learn something new that I can apply to my business.

So that’s definitely a habit I plan to keep doing. 

Well, there are certainly a lot more habits entrepreneurs can do.

But for now, these 3 works really well for me in my phase of life and I plan to keep building more habits in time to come.

Who Is Edmund Chew?

I own a 7-figure music education company called TravelClef. I help fellow business owners scale their business using paid ads. I’m obsessed with marketing and entrepreneurship.

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